I play a lot of towns people have never heard of, including myself. Most of the time, the smaller towns in the “middle of nowhere” are some of my favorite. Big cities can be tough - from finding the right venue, to cutting through the noise. There are days and nights when expectations are drastically shattered. Most of the time, I am shocked in a good way. The person in the back of the room talking magically heard the line of the song buried in the verse that is the anchor of the song itself.
Keeping these experiences in mind, everyone has heard of Las Vegas... some call it Sin City - gambling, neon lights, parties, a Katy Perry song, “The Hangover”, memories and stories for inner circles. You get the idea. All of these may true, but that is not what I think of from my experiences. I love meeting and seeing the local side of a big city. We had the opportunity to do another SOFAR show (you can revisit my last post for a recap), and these shows are basically a direct lifeline to locals who love art. And this town has some of the loveliest locals. We ended up going out with the people who organized and ran the evening. After 10 years of touring and making music, this rarely happens. I mean usually for good reasons. Events take a lot of planning and social energies. But on both of my visits to Vegas, this has been true. Also, I must mention that the artists who performed were amazing! Too many times, art becomes a competition. I have been guilty of this too. Artist compete for the affection of the audience and judge their art and each other off the rooms response, how silly. This was not one of those night. This truly felt like community built on art. I cherish these rare moments where gender, age, race, faith, and political views all vanish. There were stickers available that I snagged that summarize one of my greatest joys in life, “be still and listen.” I hope we all have the opportunity today to hear and be heard.